We know from our dabbling with Denny Yost and the Classics IV last week that a couple of their members, Buddy Buie and J.R. Cobb, went on to form Atlanta Rhythm Section.
What I didn’t know is that ARS was the outgrowth of another business entirely. According to the excellent history written on the ARS website, Buie and Cobb aligned themselves with music publisher Bill Lowery and engineer Rodney Miles to start a recording operation in Doraville, GA called Studio One.
They brought in a bunch of top-notch musician friends to round out Studio One’s house band (which supported, among others, Bonnie Bramlett, Al Kooper and Dickie Betts) and that, in turn, resulted in the formation of Atlanta Rhythm Section.
I was unaware also that they had toured extensively during the early 1970′s behind a half-dozen albums they recorded in between their outside sessions. Seems ARS was on the verge of calling it quits when they released Neon Nights in December 1976. Within months, So Into You was a hit and by the fall of 1977, they were headliners.
I saw them just about the time they were becoming known outside Georgia.
It was cold that night, so it must’ve been February or March of 1977 when I saw them play the gymnasium at Mansfield (Pa.) University.
It was right at the end of junior high school: there we were, a bunch of zit-laden, hormonally-explosive teenage boys with one joint and a song that defined our ever-evolving crushes: “so into you, I can’t get to nothin’ else…”.
Of course, ARS went on to make a bunch more hits but, really, nothing compares to that song at that time.
Here it is (along with a few other favorites):
Champagne Jam – Just a great song…thank ya’, ma’am.
I’m Not Going To Let It Bother Me Tonight – This was on a mix CD we played in the car a lot; turned into one of my 10-year old’s faves.
So Into You – I still remember singing along…
Spooky – Their revisit to the Classics IV, um, classic…